UK banks 'heavily exposed to euro collapse risk'

7 September 2012

Major banks based in the UK remain heavily exposed to the ongoing eurozone debt crisis, new figures have indicated.

Despite the fact regulators have urged British financiers to reduce the amount of cash they hold that is at risk should the economic bloc disintegrate, companies have tens of billions worth of euros invested in the region, Reuters reports.

Figures published by Santander UK, Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland in response to demands from the Financial Services Authority has revealed the banks are all involved in this "redenomination risk".

Over the course of the last few months, lenders from outside the eurozone have stepped up their efforts to reduce their exposure to the region by taking measures such as balancing liabilities and assets in each member state.

This move protects financiers on the basis that any of their losses from a country departing the bloc would be offset by the value of their liabilities.

By Claire Archer

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